Founded in 2016, Awz Ventures is the realization of Yaron Ashkenazi’s vision to build an investment powerhouse that brings together the expertise of Awz’s partners and advisors to address the global need for innovative security & intelligence technologies—to protect people & companies around the world.
Awz's story begins
Awz Managing Partner Yaron Ashkenazi is a 30-year business, technology, security & intelligence veteran, and a former Israeli Shin Bet officer who led the security details of Israeli leaders including Prime Ministers Yitzhak Rabin & President Shimon Peres (pictured with Yaron) in the late 1980s. Yaron leveraged his business relationships along with his deep ties to the Israeli security & intelligence ecosystem to form Awz Ventures.
Joined by successful Canadian investors Ed Sonshine, Howard Tanenbaum, & Kenny Finkelstein as Awz Ventures GP backers—and together with Principals Avi Libman & Josh Gutenberg—Awz Ventures I was born, focusing on cyber security & intelligence and investing in 8 promising Israeli technologies in this realm.
PM Stephen Harper
Awz Ventures I
In 2019, former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper joined the firm as partner and President of the Advisory Committee, bringing his vast global connections and expertise to the Awz table.
Successful early-stage investor and major Awz LP Daniel Mak also joined the firm in 2019 as a General Partner of Awz Ventures, focusing on our portfolio companies' strategic growth.
2019 was also the year that we expanded our prestigious advisory committee to include former heads of the top security & intelligence agencies in Israel and worldwide.
In 2020, Awz signed a strategic partnership with MAFAT (Israeli MOD’s Directorate of Defense R&D) toward the launch of Awz X-Seed, a revolutionary early-stage technology fund spearheaded by Yaron Ashkenazi and Brig. Gen. (Res) Dr. Danny Gold, Head of MAFAT.
Expanding Leadership & Team
Awz’s growth has been bolstered by the addition of prominent members of the Canadian business community as GP backers: Murray Goldman, Ronnie Faust, Howard Sokolowski, Senator Linda Frum, Jerry Naiberg, and Rick Ekstein. Today, our team has grown to 25 full-time partners & professionals managing over US $300M across four funds.
Awz Ventures III
In June 2022, we launched Awz Ventures III in Israel, along with our esteemed partners & advisors from the most prestigious security & intelligence agencies worldwide.
Awz Ventures III
The Awz Mission: We identify and scale groundbreaking ideas into multi-use technologies for a safer world.
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Azrieli Sarona Tower 121 Menachem Begin St.,57th floor Tel Aviv 6701203